Who’s viewing PCPro.co.uk on an Amiga?

Old-hardwrae-175x131Yesterday’s story on how more than 10% of PCPro.co.uk readers were already running Windows 7 caused something of a kerfuffle. However, it wasn’t the swift uptake of Microsoft’s newborn operating system that yanked people’s chains; it was the fact that 6.8% of our visitors were still running Windows 95 that sparked mild hysteria.

Who's viewing PCPro.co.uk on an Amiga?

“Call me a doubting Thomas but I just don’t believe the Windows 95 figure,” said rjp2000, commenting on the story. “I haven’t seen a Win 95 PC in the wild for years. Has anybody else seen one recently?”

Well, rjp, I promise you that it’s true. In fact, Windows 95 looks positively bleeding edge compared to some of the operating systems that darken our door.

Vital statistics

But before I reveal what these relics are, I should perhaps explain how we know what operating system you’re running, lest we’re accused of planting spyware on readers’ machines. Every time you visit our website, a text-string known as the User Agent is sent in the HTTP header, telling our servers which browser and operating system you’re running. (The excellent Browser Spy demonstrates what other information your browser reveals about you). Our website analytics software collates this information, so we know which browsers we need to test our website with when we redesign the site, for example.

The stats for the month of October so far reveal that no fewer than 23 different operating systems have been used to access our website (the full list is at the bottom of this post). I can’t reveal the exact number as it’s commercially sensitive, but I can tell you the number of visitors still running Windows 95 is in the tens of thousands.

Hundreds are still turning up with Windows 3.x PCs, which must be at least 15 years old by now. Hundreds more foolhardy souls are persevering with Windows ME – an operating system that makes Vista look polished.

However, it’s when you get right down to the bottom of the list that the prefects of the old-school begin to emerge. Ten of you have turned up at our website this month running IBM’s OS/2. Two of you, and I’d dearly love to know who you are, have viewed this website using a Commodore Amiga.

I’ll confess. I didn’t even know the Amiga had a web browser (my Amiga 1200 hasn’t been out of the loft since I left university). Our newly-crowned technical editor, Darien Graham-Smith, earned his stripes by pointing me in the direction of iBrowse, an Amiga browser with “JavaScript support, tabbed browsing, a customisable GUI layout and support for some Netscape and IE extensions.” Colour me astonished.


But the question I want answered is: why? Why in 2009 are you still browsing our website with an Amiga? Is it pure necessity? An overwhelming affection for beige hardware? Or just because you can?

I demand answers.


1. Windows XP

2. Windows Vista

3. Windows 7

4. Macintosh

5. Windows 95

6. Linux

7. Windows 2000

8. Wireless Devices

9. Other (unidentified OSes)

10. Windows 98

11. Sun SunOS

12. Windows 3.x

13. Windows NT

14. Windows ME

15. FreeBSD

16. Misc. Unix

17. Windows CE

18. IBM OS/2

19. Amiga

20. Hewlett Packard HP-UX

21. Silicon Graphics IRIX

22. Sun Solaris

23. WebTV

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